What to Wear Kayaking in 60 Degrees?

Kayaking is near and dear to my heart (after all, this whole site is a labor of love) but if you’re kayaking in 60 degree weather, you’re not just worrying about the air temperature but also what temperature the water is.

When the temperature is chilly, it’s essential to dress appropriately to ensure you remain comfortable and safe during your kayaking adventure. I learned this lesson quickly when I went out kayaking in the winter months right here in San Diego. Never again, brrr!

What to Wear Kayaking in Crisp, 60 Degree Weather

This article is the ultimate guide to dressing right as you hit the crisp 60 degree waters!

#1. Start with a Wetsuit or a Drysuit

rain coming down unexpectedly while kayaking on the ocean

Wetsuits are an excellent choice for kayaking in cold water. They not only keep you warm but also protect you from abrasions in water. A full wetsuit, booties, and gloves work perfectly for cold water kayaking. If you don’t have a wetsuit, you can rent one from a local kayak outfitter.

Alternatively, I suggest you opt for a drysuit which would be a better option. A drysuit keeps water from entering your clothing and is designed to help maintain body temperature in cold weather.

It usually comes with waterproof gaskets at the wrists and neck and thick latex socks to keep your feet warm. However, bear in mind that drysuits are more expensive than wetsuits.

#2. Layer Up

Layering is essential when going for kayaking in low temperatures. Different layers help create a buffer between your body and the elements outside.

Start with thermal underwear, then add a mid-layer like a fleece. A waterproof jacket or a dry suit, as mentioned earlier, is also an excellent option for an outer layer.

#3. Footwear

Ohhh, this is a tough one. The first time I didn’t take this advice to heart and laughed it off was the only time I didn’t wear proper footwear while out on a kayak in 60 degree temperature!

Cold temperatures can make your feet numb which can affect your balance on the kayak. To prevent this, ensure you wear warm socks and waterproof shoes or boots to keep your feet dry. Wet feet can lead to hypothermia, so it’s essential to keep them dry.

#4. Headgear and Gloves

Kayaking in cold weather means your extremities like your ears and hands are highly vulnerable to the cold. Wearing a beanie or a balaclava will keep your ears warm.

Lastly, gloves or mittens will keep your fingers warm, enabling you to grip the paddle comfortably.

#5. Choose Synthetic Fabrics

If you don’t have a wetsuit or a drysuit, synthetic fabrics can help keep you warm and dry while kayaking in cold weather.

Avoid cotton as it retains moisture, making it harder for you to retain heat. Dry clothes are more comfortable and will help keep you warm while you paddle.

#6. Gloves

Choose materials that provide insulation without bulkiness. Wool is a great choice as it keeps you warm even when wet, so it’s ideal if you’re likely to be splashed in cold water while kayaking.

Is It Safe to Kayak in 60 Degree Water?

Yes, it is safe to kayak in 60-degree water provided that you are equipped with the appropriate gear and follow safety guidelines.

Frankly, hypothermia is a huge concern in such conditions if you are not properly dressed, but with the right layers, a wetsuit or drysuit, and sensible precautions, you can comfortably and safely enjoy kayaking.

I always strongly suggest to check the weather conditions before you set out and ensure you have all the necessary equipment. Safety should be a priority when kayaking, regardless of the temperature, but due to the serious concern of hypothermia, sa

Is 65 Too Cold to Kayak?

No, 65 is not too cold to kayak. However, as with any water activity, it’s crucial to dress appropriately.

In this temperature range, it may be comfortable to wear lighter layers but it’s crucial to have a drysuit or wetsuit on especially if the water is cooler.

Remember this part: it’s not just the air temperature you need to consider, but also the water temperature and wind chill. Always prioritize safety and ensure you’re well-prepared before heading out on your kayaking adventure.

Is It Safe to Wear Shorts in 60 Degree Weather?

While it’s not unsafe to wear shorts in 60-degree weather, your comfort level will greatly depend on your tolerance to the cold and the type of activity you’re participating in.

In the context of kayaking, however, wearing shorts might not be the best choice. Even if the air temperature feels comfortable, the water temperature can be much colder.

Getting wet from paddling or from water splashes could potentially lead to hypothermia if not appropriately dressed.

That’s why I strongly advise to take a wet or dry suit into consideration: it’s easy to get super cold once cold water gets on you or you fall into the water by mistake.


There you go: these are all the tips I have you to dress well and to be prepared for kayaking in 60-65 degree weather.

With the right apparel, you can surely make your kayaking experience enjoyable and fun! And with the wrong apparel, a kayaking trip can turn dangerous in a moment’s notice, so please go well prepared and well dressed!

Are Fishing Kayaks Stable?

If you’re new to the world of kayak fishing, you may be wondering if fishing kayaks are stable enough to be safe out on the water.

Perhaps you love fishing and are wondering if fishing from a kayak is safe. Having owned a couple fishing kayaks over the years, I can share a lot about these kayaks and give you a good perspective on them.

So, let’s get things started!

Are Fishing Kayaks Safe and Stable?

Yes, fishing kayaks are generally stable enough to keep you safe while you fish.

However, there are several factors that determine just how stable a fishing kayak will be.

Factor #1: Width of Kayak

Hobie 14

For example, the most important factor is the width of the kayak. The wider the kayak, the more stable it will be. Fishing kayaks are typically wider than other types of kayaks which is one of the reasons they are so popular among anglers.

Factor #2: Hull Design

Another factor that contributes to the stability of a fishing kayak is the design of the hull. Some kayaks have a flat bottom, while others have a V-shaped bottom that provides more stability.

The ones that I love and prefer have a pontoon-style hull which provides even more stability and makes them ideal for standing up and casting.

Factor #3: Size and Weight Capacity

Pescador In Action

I know from experience that the size and weight capacity of a fishing kayak also play a role in its stability.

If you’re a larger person or plan to carry a lot of gear with you while fishing, you’ll want to choose a kayak with a high weight capacity and larger size. This will ensure that the kayak remains stable even with extra weight on board.

Factor #4: Usage

Finally, the way you use the kayak can also impact its stability.

If you’re a beginner, I suggest you take your time and start out slow and steady. Don’t try to move around too quickly, and avoid sudden movements that could cause the kayak to tip over.

As you become more experienced, you can start to experiment with more advanced techniques and movements, but always prioritize safety first.

Do Fishing Kayaks Tip Easily?

The common concern about fishing kayaks tipping over is largely based on misconceptions. In fact, fishing kayaks are designed with stability in mind and do not easily tip over if used correctly.

As a rule of thumb, the wider the kayak, the harder it is to tip over. As explained earlier, this is because a wider kayak distributes the weight over a larger area, resulting in increased buoyancy and stability.

However, it’s important to note that no kayak is completely immune to tipping. Sudden, sharp movements, or standing up without proper balance may compromise the stability of the kayak.

Also, take into consideration water conditions: water conditions can significantly affect the kayak’s stability. Rough waters, waves, or strong currents can increase the risk of tipping. This is why I strongly suggest that you gain experience in calmer waters before tackling more challenging environments.

Are Fishing Kayaks More Stable than Canoes?

When it comes to stability, fishing kayaks and canoes both have their advantages.

Fishing kayaks are usually designed with wider hulls for better balance on the water, making them ideal for those who enjoy a serene, stable fishing experience. They also tend to sit lower in the water which can reduce the center of gravity and increase stability.

Now on the other hand, canoes can offer a larger area for movement and are more accommodating of additional gear or a second person. This can make them feel more stable, especially when paddling in calm waters.

But canoes do sit higher in the water and may feel less stable in rougher conditions.

They’re both very stable options but I prefer fishing kayaks over canoes because they are easier to paddle and I like that they are lower in the water.

Are Fishing Kayaks Hard to Flip?


In my humble experience, fishing kayaks are generally designed to resist flipping but the ease or difficulty of flipping one will depend on various aspects like its design, the weight it’s carrying, the water conditions, and the behavior of the user, as I discussed above.

If you’re worried about your fishing kayak flipping, then look for a wide hull or a pontoon-style bottom. It’s much harder to flip kayaks designed with those aspects.

Again, for beginners, I recommend to start in calm waters and gradually build up to more challenging situations as confidence and skills improve. If you’re afraid of your kayak tipping, where a life jacket and buddy up with someone experienced.

Are Fishing Kayaks Harder to Paddle?

No, fishing kayaks are not inherently harder to paddle than other types of kayaks.

However, because of their wider design, which lends to stability, also results in a larger surface area in contact with the water, potentially increasing the resistance when paddling.

The difficulty in paddling can also be influenced by the weight of the gear onboard, the water current, and wind direction.

For this reason, certain fishing kayaks are outfitted with pedal systems, allowing anglers to propel themselves using their legs, freeing up their hands for fishing. This can make movement easier compared to traditional paddling.

If paddling is a concern, opt for a paddling kayak.

Last Words

I can definitely say that fishing kayaks are stable and safe enough to go out on the water. However, it’s equally important to choose a kayak that is the right size and weight capacity for your needs and to take your safety seriously.

How to Get in an Inflatable Kayak

If you’re new to the world of inflatable kayaks, it can be a little daunting figuring out how to get in.

With their buoyancy and flexibility, it can seem like you’ll never be able to get in without tipping over. The first few times I tried it with my Sea Eagle, it felt really tricky but fear not! By following these tips and tricks, you’ll be gliding along like a pro in no time.

Getting into an Inflatable Kayak

There are several ways to get into an inflatable kayak so go through each one of these, print them, and try them each a couple of times.

#1. The Island Method

When you’re ready to get in the kayak on the water, start by pulling up to a shallow area or island. Take your paddle and stick it perpendicular to the kayak, with the paddle blade resting on the shore or island.

Then use the paddle as a stabilizer to help you climb into the kayak. Place one hand on the paddle, and one hand on the kayak, and lift yourself in.

#2. The Butt Scoot

If you’re having trouble getting your legs in, try the butt scoot method. Sit down on the edge of the kayak and swing your legs inside. Then, use your hands to scoot your butt further into the kayak until you’re comfortable.

Once you’re in, reach forward and grab onto the paddle to stabilize yourself.

#3. The Swim Method

If you happen to fall out of the kayak while you’re on the water, don’t panic. The swim method is an easy way to get back in.

Start by swimming to the back of the kayak and grab onto the side.

Then, use your legs to push yourself up and onto the back of the kayak. Once you’re stabilized, swing your legs inside and sit down.

#4. Remember: Practice Makes Perfect

Before you even get to the water, take a few minutes to practice getting in and out of your kayak on land. This will help build your confidence and allow you to figure out the best way to enter the kayak.

Sit down on the ground next to your kayak, with your legs inside. Use your hands to grab onto the sides of the kayak and wiggle your way in.

Practice different angles and methods to figure out what works best for you.

#5. Be Confident and Have Fun

The most important thing when getting in an inflatable kayak is to be confident and have fun!

Don’t worry if you get a little wet or wobbly at first – everyone starts there. Inflatable kayaks are more buoyant so require more patience.

With practice and patience, you’ll soon be gliding along the water like a pro.

How Do I Get into My Inflatable Kayak from a Dock?

If you’re a beginner, I don’t advise you to get into your inflatable kayak from a dock. However, if you insist on learning, take each step slowly and keep your balance the best you can.

Getting into your inflatable kayak from a dock requires a slightly different approach. Start by placing your kayak parallel to the dock, ensuring that the dock is low enough for easy access into your kayak.

If it’s too high, you might want to look for a different launch point. Once your kayak is in position, sit down on the edge of the dock with your legs over the side and directly above the kayak.

Slowly lower yourself down into the kayak, maintaining a hold on the dock for stability. Swing your legs into the kayak one at a time, keeping your weight centered to prevent tipping. Once you’re seated comfortably, grab your paddle and push off from the dock.

How Do I Get into My Inflatable Kayak from the Beach?

Entering your inflatable kayak from a beach is fairly straightforward and super duper easy!

Begin by positioning your kayak perpendicular to the water’s edge, with the back end facing the water.

Ensure the kayak is stable, perhaps by weighting it down with your gear. Sit down at the back end of your kayak, with your legs pointing towards the bow (front).

Gradually slide yourself into the cockpit, bringing your legs inside. To avoid friction against the bottom, make sure the water is deep enough to float the kayak slightly. Finally, grab your paddle and start kayaking.

Always remember to maintain balance and move slowly to avoid tipping over.

Is It Hard to Get in and out of an inflatable kayak vs a hardshell kayak?

3 men carrying a kayak

Both inflatable and hardshell kayaks present their unique challenges when it comes to getting in and out.

However, due to their buoyancy and flexibility, inflatable kayaks can feel a bit unstable, especially for beginners. Their bottoms are softer, which means they can shift more under your weight as you’re trying to get in or out, potentially causing imbalance.

On the other hand, hardshell kayaks are more rigid and sturdy, providing a stable platform for entry and exit. However, they can be more challenging to climb into from water if you happen to capsize, due to their higher sides and weight.

What is the easiest spot a beginner should launch their inflatable kayak from?

For beginners, the easiest spot to launch an inflatable kayak is a sandy beach with a gentle slope and calm waters. This type of location allows for a smooth, controlled entry into the kayak, reducing the risk of tipping over.

Additionally, the soft sand can serve as a cushion in case of a fall. The gentle slope will let you gradually glide into the water once you’re seated in the kayak, while the calm waters will make your first few moments of paddling less daunting.

It’s also beneficial if the area has a shallow water depth for some distance from the shore, providing a safety net while you’re still getting the hang of balancing and maneuvering the kayak.

In Summary

Getting in an inflatable kayak may seem overwhelming at first, but with a little bit of practice and these tips and tricks, you’ll be a pro in no time.

Remember to start slowly, build your confidence, and have fun. Before you know it, you’ll be exploring new waterways and enjoying all the benefits of this versatile and exciting type of watercraft.

Being patient will go a long way here; trust me, this is coming from someone who wants to learn at the snap of a finger! If you want to learn how to get back in your kayak after you’ve fallen out, you might be interested in reading that article.

Should I Get a Paddleboard or Kayak?

Have you been considering trying a new watersport?

Paddleboarding and kayaking have exploded in popularity in recent years, and for good reason. Both activities offer a great workout while also providing opportunities to enjoy the peacefulness of being out on the water.

However, if you’re new to watersports, you may be wondering which one to try first. Since I’m a water baby and love most watersports, I’m here to guide you and show you the differences between both and which one may be better suited to you. Here we go:

Paddleboarding vs Kayaking: Which One Is More Suited to You?

Deciding between paddleboarding and kayaking is a super tough choice especially when you’re a beginner so I’ll be discussing the pros and cons of each watersport since I’ve been kayaking since I was a teenager and picked up paddleboarding over seven years ago.

#1. Ease of Use

Paddleboarding can be a bit more challenging for beginners as it requires good balance and a bit of core strength to stand up on the board and paddle.

Kayaking is generally considered easier for beginners to pick up. Sit-on-top kayaks can be stable and easy to maneuver and are perfect for calm waters like lakes and bays.

If you’re looking for a more relaxed, low-impact activity, kayaking may be a better starting point for you.

#2. Solo vs. Group Activity

a group of kayakers in one big kayak

Both paddleboarding and kayaking can be enjoyed either solo or with a group.

However, if you’re looking for a social activity, kayaking may be the better option. Kayaks can be tethered together so a group can paddle and float along together. I’ve kayaked with friends so many times over the my lifetime and have made some awesome memories. If you’re a social butterfly, this is a great option.

Paddleboarding can be a more solitary activity, but that being said, it’s still possible to paddle with friends or your pet and it can be a very rewarding experience.

Ultimately, it mostly comes down to personal preference as to whether you prefer to paddle alone or with others.

#3. Fishing

If fishing is your passion, both paddleboarding and kayaking offer a unique experience to enjoy this pastime.

Kayaks are traditionally favored by anglers for their stability and storage capabilities. They often come equipped with rod holders and ample space for all your fishing gear, making them an excellent choice for longer fishing trips.

Yet paddleboarding presents an exciting alternative. While paddleboards may lack the storage of a kayak, they offer an elevated vantage point that can greatly enhance visibility when fishing in clear waters. However, they require a bit more balance and skill to keep stable while casting a line.

Thus, while both can be used for catching fish, kayaks may be the better choice if you’re a beginner or plan on longer fishing expeditions.

#4. Speed and Thrills

kayak flipping over

When considering speed, kayaking generally takes the lead. Kayaks, with their sleek design and use of double-bladed paddles, enable the user to move faster through the water with less exertion compared to paddleboarding. The sitting position in a kayak also provides a mechanical advantage, allowing for stronger paddle strokes.

It definitely feels more natural to fish while sitting in my kayak.

Paddleboards are usually slower due to the standing position. This requires more effort for balance and control, which may limit the speed you can achieve.

That being said, the thrill of balancing on a paddleboard, especially in challenging conditions, can also provide its own kind of adrenaline rush.

If you want speed and thrills, kayaking is the way to go.

#5. Cost

Both paddleboards and kayaks can range in price from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars, but kayaks tend to be on the less expensive side.

Generally speaking, you’ll find that paddleboards are more expensive, especially if you’re interested in purchasing a high-quality one. However, used kayaks can also be a great buy, so keep that in mind if you’re on a budget.

#6. Workout Benefits

Both paddleboarding and kayaking can offer an incredible core workout, but there are some differences in the muscles used.

Paddleboarding requires a lot of stabilization especially in the legs and core since you’re standing on the board.

Kayaking is more upper body-focused, especially on the arms and shoulders as you paddle.

If you’re looking for the ultimate full-body workout, paddleboarding may be a better option, but if you want to focus more on upper body strength, kayaking may be the way to go.

#7. Terrain

The terrain you’ll be paddling on can also play a role in which water sport you should choose. Kayaks can be used on both calm and rough waters, so they’re a good option for those looking to explore various types of waters. They can also be great for fishing or birdwatching.

Paddleboarding is a bit more limited in terms of where you can go as they’re best suited for calmer, flatter waters like bays and lakes.

Is paddle boarding safer than kayaking?

When it comes to safety, both paddleboarding and kayaking have their risks and precautions.

Let’s start with paddleboarding. Paddleboarding, due to its less enclosed design, generally offers a higher risk of falling into the water. However, the risk of entrapment is lower than in kayaking, where capsizing can potentially trap the paddler under the kayak.

With kayaking, there is also a risk of injury from the fast-moving paddle. Both activities necessitate proper safety equipment, including life vests, and ideally should be undertaken in safe, familiar waters especially by beginners.

It’s essential that paddlers are strong swimmers and understand how to handle themselves in the water.

From personal experience, I can say they both come with their own risks and it will depend on the person’s level of experience and training to minimize any risks.

Do paddleboards flip easily?

Paddleboards by design are relatively stable but they can flip under certain conditions. The stability of a paddleboard largely depends on its size, design, and the user’s skill level.

Wider and longer boards are typically more stable and less likely to flip. However, in challenging conditions such as rough waters, high winds, or under the weight of an unbalanced user, a paddleboard can indeed flip.

Beginners may find it a bit tricky to maintain balance initially, but with practice, they can significantly reduce the risk of flipping.

So, while paddleboards can flip, it is not something that occurs easily or frequently, provided you’re using the right board and appropriate technique for your skill level and the conditions.

Can you ride waves on a SUP?

paddle for a paddleboard

Absolutely, you can ride waves on a Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP). In fact, SUP surfing is a popular variant of traditional surfing, which allows you to catch and ride waves.

Its advantage lies in the stand-up position, providing a better view of incoming waves, thus enabling you to spot and catch them earlier. However, this requires a certain level of skill and practice. SUP boards used for surfing are typically shorter and more maneuverable.

It’s crucial to remember that, like any water sport, safety should be a top priority when SUP surfing. Always wear a leash to remain connected to your board in case of a fall, and consider a personal flotation device for additional safety.


Ultimately, the decision between purchasing a paddleboard or kayak will depend on your personal preferences and needs.

If you’re looking for a more relaxed, low-impact activity or want to paddle with a group, kayaking may be the better option for you. However, if you’re up for a challenge and want to try a full-body workout on the water, paddleboarding may be the perfect fit.

Both activities are tons of fun and if you love one, you’ll probably love the other one and learn it at a different time.

Sea Kayaks vs River Kayaks: Learning the Differences and Which One is Suited For You

Sea kayaks and river kayaks have a whole lotta differences but as someone new to either, it can be hard to spot them until you actually use both and see the differences and how it affects your paddling ability.

Lucky for you, I’ve been on both and am here to help you learn the differences between them.

Sea Kayaks vs River Kayaks: Delving Deep!

A decade ago, I loved kayaking in the ocean. Now, it makes me wanna crap bricks if I’m being honest. With that said, kayaking in the sea is thrilling and you enjoy the beauty of the ocean, scenery, and wildlife like nothing else you’ve done!

However, you definitely need to understand what kayaks are safe to go sea kayaking and which ones are appropriate for kayaking in the river. Here we go:

#1. Design and Construction

The design and construction of a kayak determine its performance in different conditions. With that said, a sea kayak is designed for long-distance travel in open water conditions. It has a narrow, streamlined shape and a longer length with a pointed bow and stern. Kayaking in the ocean has way different challenges than in a river and this design is most suited for sea kayaks.

In contrast, a river kayak is shorter, wider, and more maneuverable. It is designed for paddling in small and rocky rivers with fast rapids and tight turns.

Compare the both and you’ll see that ocean kayaks are designed narrow and streamlined whereas river kayaks are short and wide to cut through the rapid.

#2. Length and Width

Sea kayaks are generally longer often ranging from 12 to 24 feet in length. The longer length improves their speed and tracking, making them ideal for extended trips across open and choppy waters.

Their narrow width, usually around 18 to 24 inches, contributes to their streamlined design and speed but may compromise on initial stability. The length and width directly contribute to a better experience in the ocean.

On the other hand, river kayaks are comparatively shorter, typically between 6 and 12 feet long. This short length enhances their maneuverability, enabling kayakers to navigate through tight turns and fast-moving river currents.

They also tend to be wider, around 24 to 36 inches, which increases their stability, especially useful when tackling turbulent rapids. Short and thick to get you through those adrenaline pumping moments!

#3. Cockpit

The cockpit is where the paddler sits in a kayak. So in a sea kayak, the cockpit is designed to keep the paddler dry even in rough water conditions. It has a larger opening that allows easy entry and exit, and a spray skirt can be attached to keep the water out (these are super helpful in keeping you dry).

Now, the cockpit of a river kayak is much smaller. It is designed to provide better control and maneuverability in rapids, with less concern for staying dry.

#4. Performance & Handling

When it comes to performance and handling, the characteristics of sea kayaks and river kayaks diverge significantly.

The sea kayak, with its elongated body and pointed ends, is designed for speed and directional stability, particularly in open, rough waters. The hull design minimizes side-to-side rocking, allowing for efficient paddling and covering vast distances with less effort.

However, this same design decreases maneuverability in tight spaces and requires more skill to change direction quickly. The difference is noticeable when you get in one and try to maneuver it.

Contrarily, river kayaks are designed for agility and quick responsiveness. Their shorter length and wider hull are tailored for making sharp turns and navigating through river obstacles or rapid water currents.

They are highly maneuverable, allowing for quick directional changes, but they definitely lack the stability and speed offered by sea kayaks in straight-line travel or in choppy seas.

These differences are significant when you compare the the nature of your kayaking adventure before selecting the right type of kayak.

#5. Stability

Stability in a kayak is usually characterized into two types: initial and secondary.

Initial stability refers to the kayak’s steadiness when sitting flat on the water, while secondary stability refers to how stable the kayak is when tilted or leaned to one side.

Sea kayaks, with their long, narrow designs, might seem less stable initially, especially for beginners. This is due to their narrow width which may cause the kayak to feel wobbly when it is flat on the water.

However, they excel in secondary stability. Their design enables them to handle waves and rough water conditions effectively, making them less likely to capsize when they are leaned on one side. This is particularly useful when navigating the open, choppy waters that sea kayaking often involves.

River kayaks, on the other hand, are designed with a wider hull, providing excellent initial stability. They are stable when flat on the water, making them ideal for beginners or for calm, slow-moving waters.

However, they may lack secondary stability, making them more prone to tipping over when leaned to one side or when navigating through turbulent rapids.

#6. Hull Shape

When it comes to the hull, a sea kayak has a longer and narrower hull with a more pointed bow and stern. This shape allows the sea kayak to cut through waves more efficiently and maintain a straight course.

In comparison, a river kayak has a shorter and wider hull with a flatter bottom. This hull shape help with better stability and maneuverability in rapids.

#7. Outfitting

tired woman napping in her kayak

Outfitting refers to the accessories and features added to a kayak to make it more comfortable and efficient to use.

In a sea kayak, you’ll typically see features such as adjustable footrests, bulkheads, hatches, rudders, and skegs. These features improve the kayak’s stability, efficiency, and tracking in open water.

In contrast, a river kayak will have features such as thigh braces, hip pads, and backrests. These features provide better control and support in rapids and tight turns.

#8. Storage Space

Differences in the design between sea kayaks and river kayaks also extend to storage space. Sea kayaks are typically outfitted with generous storage options to accommodate the needs of long-distance paddling trips.

They often feature sealed hatches and bulkheads that provide dry storage for camping gear, food, and other essentials. Also, the deck of a sea kayak may have bungee cords or deck lines to secure items that don’t need to be kept dry or require quick access.

By contrast, river kayaks, designed for swift and short runs, usually have pretty limited storage space. The emphasis is on agility and speed rather than carrying capacity. Some models might include small areas for storage, often secured by bungee cords or nets, but typically, they don’t feature enclosed storage hatches.

Having been on several trips on sea and river kayaks, it’s important to note that the type of gear, food, and clothing one would bring for a river run is substantially different – often smaller and lighter – than what one might need on an open sea adventure. Your needs are different for each trip so definitely consider those!

#9. Weight Limit

kayak flipping over

When it comes to load capacity, sea kayaks and river kayaks differ considerably due to the nature of their intended use. Sea kayaks are designed for long-distance travel and because of that, they are built to carry more weight.

They typically have a higher weight limit, generally ranging from 300 to 450 pounds. This allows for the storage of camping gear, food, water, and other supplies needed for extended trips.

On the other hand, river kayaks, designed for quick maneuvers and short runs, tend to have lower weight capacities. They usually have weight limits ranging between 200 and 300 pounds.

These limits reflect their primary function of navigating through river rapids, where agility and responsiveness are paramount, and large storage capacity is generally unnecessary.

It’s important for potential buyers to consider their own weight, along with the weight of any gear they plan to carry, when choosing between a sea and river kayak. This is crucial in determining the type of kayak you should rent or buy.

Can a sea kayak be used in a river?

While a sea kayak can technically be used in a river, it may not be the optimal choice for this type of environment. A sea kayak’s design, featuring a longer, narrow hull and a focus on secondary stability, is specifically meant to handle the open, often choppy waters of the sea.

Their length and lower initial stability could prove challenging when navigating the tighter turns and obstacles commonly found in rivers.

While it’s possible to use a sea kayak in a river, a river kayak, designed with a wider hull and greater maneuverability, would usually be a better fit. I do not recommend using a sea kayak in a river.

Are sea kayaks more stable?

Sea kayaks are designed with a focus on secondary stability, which is the stability a kayak exhibits when it is tilted or leaned to one side. This makes them more stable in choppy waters and less likely to capsize when leaned on one side, which is particularly useful in the open, unpredictable waters of the sea. However, they may feel less stable initially, especially to beginners, due to their narrow width.

On the other hand, river kayaks are designed with a wider hull that provides excellent primary stability, which is the stability a kayak exhibits when it is flat on the water. This makes them feel stable and less wobbly for beginners or when used in calm, slow-moving waters.

So to answer the question, “Are sea kayaks more stable?”, it depends on the context.

Do sea kayaks capsize easier than river kayaks?

The tendency of a kayak to capsize depends largely on its design and stability, as well as the conditions in which it is being used.

Considering sea kayaks, they are designed with secondary stability in mind, meaning they can tilt or lean to one side without capsizing. This comes in handy in choppy sea conditions.

In contrast, river kayaks are designed with a wider hull, offering excellent primary stability when flat on the water, making them feel less ‘wobbly’ to novices. However, they may be more likely to capsize when leaning to one side, especially in the swift currents often found in rivers.

From personal experience, I can tell you that both types of kayaks are relatively stable and do not capsize easily if used in the appropriate conditions for which they were designed. It is also important to remember that the skill and experience of the paddler play crucial roles in preventing capsizes.

In Summary

In summary, sea and river kayaks are two different types of kayaks designed for different purposes.

As I discussed above, the main differences between them can be found in their design, construction, cockpit, hull shape, outfitting, and materials.

Whether you’re planning a long-distance sea kayaking trip or an exciting river run, choose the kayak that’s best suited for the conditions you’ll encounter, and have an amazing time on the water!